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February 27th, 2020

Understanding Dental Phobia and How to Treat It

It’s time for your dentist's appointment but you are extremely nervous and worried about going. You have dental phobia, a fear of the dentist that puts you into an extreme panic. Not to worry, there are ways to help you ease this dread and get through your appointment with great results. How can you avoid being afraid of going to see the dentist?

Sedation

Your dentist can help you feel more comfortable in the dental chair by using dental sedation. There are many options available to you such as an oral sedative, laughing gas or an IV sedative. These treatments are provided by your licensed dentist and/or a registered nurse.

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What exactly does sedation do?

  •  Relaxes you
  • Allows you to feel sleepy or be asleep during a dental procedure
  • Helps relieve your anxiety about the treatment

Dental treatments should not cause you immense amounts of pain, but your mind can play tricks on you and make you think you are about to suffer when you have a dental phobia. When you are given sedation, your mind can relax a little bit and your dentist can perform your treatments with ease.

Music

You might want to focus your mind somewhere else entirely by listening to music while the dentist does his/her work. Sometimes when you focus on something so intently, you miss other things happening around you hence forgetting about the nervousness while at your dental appointment.

Music allows you to tune out for the time you are in the dentist’s chair. You might even consider meditating as you listen to some tunes. This can also clear and calm your mind.

Hypnosis

Hypnosis might work for you if you have dental phobia. Usually, after several visits to your hypnotist, you can learn to stop putting all your attention on your fears thereby reducing or eliminating dental phobia. Next time you go to the dentist you might be able to breathe with ease instead of sudden short puffs of nervousness.

How can you tell if you have a dental phobia? Here are some symptoms that could lead to you uncovering if you have this phobia.

  •  You are tense and unable to enjoy a good night’s sleep before a dental booking
  • You experience low blood pressure and have fainted when thinking about an upcoming dentist appointment
  • You get excessively sweaty before or during a dental appointment

What could have caused you to become phobic of the dentist?

  • Difficulty trusting people
  • Believing your mouth is a personal space that should not be accessed
  • Afraid to lose control
  • A traumatic experience in a previous healthcare situation or life in general

Franklin Dental wants you to know that we understand what it means to be afraid and are here to help you through your fears while in the dental chair. Ask your dentist for the specific options that will work best for your situation.

Dr. Gurshant

Medically reviewed by Dr. Gurshant Grewal - a Registered Dentist on February 27th, 2020

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